Miami Police Union's Threatened Boycott of Beyoncé's Concert Didn't Work Out

A Miami police union chief called for officers to boycott Beyoncé's April 27 show at Marlins Park, but the police department says it had no problem staffing the event to capacity.
A Miami police union chief called for officers to boycott Beyoncé's April 27 show at Marlins Park, but the police department says it had no problem staffing the event to capacity.
Photo by Robin Harper

Two months ago, Miami police union president Javier Ortiz rattled the Beyhive when he called for a boycott of Beyoncé's upcoming concert at Marlins Park, the first stop on her 40-date Formation World Tour. Ortiz deemed the superstar’s message "anti-police" and suggested City of Miami Police officers protest by refusing to work the concert detail.

Flash forward, and Beyoncé's Miami show is now only two days away, arriving on the heels of her surprise release of the epic visual album Lemonade over the weekend. And it appears Ortiz's plan for a massive boycott has not panned out.

Several cops have been slated to work the event Wednesday, and not one had to be drafted against his or her will, Miami Police Department spokesman Officer Ernest Lawrence tells New Times.

"There was no one who had to be put in on a voluntary basis," Lawrence confirmed. "The concert will be fully staffed."

Reached this week, Ortiz said his plans for the boycott suffered because he announced it at the same time the list was being circulated for officers to sign up. And despite what appears to be evidence to the contrary, he still believes the boycott "was a success."

"Out of our 1,100 members, less than 30 people signed up [to work the show]," he said.

Lawrence said he couldn't confirm how many officers agreed to work the concert because of officer safety reasons but said the event will be properly staffed to the decided-upon capacity.

In a rare interview earlier this month, Beyoncé made her first public comments about the uproar Ortiz and other police union members stirred up, telling Elle UK that "anyone who perceives my message as anti-police is completely mistaken."

The multiplatinum artist told the magazine: "I have so much admiration and respect for officers and the families of officers who sacrifice themselves to keep us safe. But let's be clear: I am against police brutality and injustice. Those are two separate things."


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